Dr. Gary R. Matyas has been selected the 2012 recipient of the NIDA Avant-Garde Award for Medications Development. Matyas proposes to develop an effective, safe and easily manufactured combination anti-heroin/HIV vaccine that could treat heroin addiction while at the same time prevent HIV infection in those receiving the vaccine. Matyas will receive $1,000,000 per year for five years to support his research. He works at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research (WRAIR) in Silver Spring, M.d. The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), part of the National Institutes of Health, announced the award today.
"This highly innovative dual-vaccine model would simultaneously address the intertwined epidemics of heroin abuse and HIV," said NIDA Director Dr. Nora D. Volkow. "This is precisely the type of ground-breaking research NIDA's Avant-Garde program was designed to support. The implications for public health are enormous."